In 1990, the Washington Redskins signed a towering free agent named James “Jumpy” Geathers to add defensive line depth.
On Thursday, the team looked to the next generation of the Geathers family, signing nephew Clifton Geathers to play defensive end.
At 6-foot-7 and 290 pounds, Jumpy Geathers’ biggest asset was country strength he developed in the tobacco fields of rural Georgetown County, S.C. Geathers spent three seasons of a 13-year professional career in Washington, where he patented the “forklift” move and contributed to a Super Bowl XXVI championship.
Clifton said any moves he learned from his uncle are family secrets. One family heirloom is plain to see. At 6-foot-8, Clifton inherited the height gene.
After playing his college ball at South Carolina, Geathers was drafted in the sixth round of the 2010 NFL Draft. He spent time with Miami, Seattle, Dallas, Indianapolis – and most recently – Philadelphia.
The Geathers family name is well known in NFL circles.
Clifton’s father, Robert Geathers Sr., played six years for the Bills, and his older brother, Robert Jr., spent the last 10 years as defensive end with the Cincinnati Bengals. His younger brother Kwame spent 2013 as a rookie with the San Diego Chargers.
Lucky for Clifton, he’s already familiar with the D.C. Metro system.“The Forklift”
The lede from Ken Murray’s Baltimore Sun game story covering a 1991 matchup between the Redskins and the Steelers can tell you better than I can.
“Charles Mann calls it a ‘warehouse move,’ Jumpy Geathers calls it ‘The Forklift’ and the Washington Redskins yesterday called it a godsend.”
ABOUT THE REDSKINS: Headquartered at Redskins Park in Ashburn, Virginia, and owned by Daniel Snyder, the historic Washington Redskins Football Club has won five World Championship titles including the 1937 and 1942 National Football League Championship games, as well as Super Bowls XVII, XXII and XXVI. Founded in 1932 as the Boston Braves in Massachusetts, the team changed its name to the Redskins in 1933 and relocated to Washington, D.C., in 1937. Since then, the team has become one of the most recognizable professional sports franchises in history, featuring multiple Hall of Fame coaches, 19 members of the Pro Football Hall of Fame (with seven others who also were Redskins) and becoming the first team in the NFL with an official marching band and fight song, "Hail to the Redskins." The Redskins have been owned by Dan Snydersince 1999, and beginning in 1997, began playing their home games at FedExField in Landover, Md.